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25 Silversea Athens (Piraeus) Cruise Reviews

This was our fourth Silversea cruise in an Owner’s Suite. All four were on different ships: Silver Shadow, Silver Muse, Silver Spirit, Silver Whisper. This cruise was the Mediterranean at the end of October. This was Silver ... Read More
This was our fourth Silversea cruise in an Owner’s Suite. All four were on different ships: Silver Shadow, Silver Muse, Silver Spirit, Silver Whisper. This cruise was the Mediterranean at the end of October. This was Silver Shadow's last cruise before its refurbishment. So, it still had the u-shaped bar which I prefer (see pictures if you are unfamiliar). I hope they don't pull it out during the drydock. Even though it was the final cruise, we did not note any major deficits. We were generally very happy with this cruise. We had the best butler we have ever had. At this point we know how we want our room stocked (we make a list of our needs before the butler introduces himself). One need I have is San Pellegrino. We asked once and were thereafter never without three bottles. He even brought a new bottle of Bourbon we he noticed that my first bottle was getting low. Coincidentally, it turned out that a guy I had worked with years ago was on the same cruise. We became reacquainted, and my wife and I thought it would be nice to host a little cocktail party. Our butler did a magnificent job of organizing it: Caviar, other canopies, champaign. We turned planning our dinners over to the butler. Every day, I simply asked him where and when we were eating, and he told us. I don't know if that fell into his job description, but it worked well for us. That solved my frustration with the Silversea reservation process (which basically is, set your alarm for midnight on the day online reservations open--months before your cruise--or you will miss the window of opportunity). I am in the process of adjusting my expectations of cruise ship luxury dining experiences, from what I expect at a land-based restaurant. Here is an example of what I mean. We frequent a fine dining Italian restaurant near our home. (For level setting purposes, fine dining means we expect to spend about $250 on dinner.) Last time we visited our local restaurant, I told the waiter that I wanted one of the veal dishes, but that I was craving some fettuccini Alfredo. The waiter's response, "I will make that happen." I got veal with a side of fettuccini Alfredo. Rather than bore you with a transcript of the same exchange on Silversea, suffice it that I have finally accepted that such personalized service cannot be expected on a cruise ship. But there were some minor lapses that fell below Silversea standards. One night at dinner the waiter didn't bother clearing our table before thrusting the dessert menu into our hands. Thirty seconds later he was standing there asking for my dessert order. I hadn't even glanced at the menu. Silversea offers its own sparkling water, which is fine for me, except that on this cruise, it was consistently flat. So, I started asking for San Pellegrino. I had to remind every waiter, every time I needed a refill what I was drinking. One amenity that Silversea offers in its Owner’s Suites is free laundry service. (The other three, Seabourn, Crystal, and Regent don't seem to include that.) We only bring carry-ons (yes that is correct, an 11-night cruise, and 5 extra nights with only two carry-ons--if you want to know how that is done, message me). Free laundry service makes that easier. Nonetheless, we have decided we should not become married to Silversea without at least having a baseline. So, we have booked a Seabourn cruise for next March. Seabourn does not include laundry service with their Wintergarden Suites. We have guesstimated that paying for laundry will add $300 to the cost of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our first Silversea cruise. We chose this cruise because of their unique destinations and excursions. Being a smaller ship was a plus too. First... the food was incredible; well seasoned, flavorful and well presented. So many ... Read More
This was our first Silversea cruise. We chose this cruise because of their unique destinations and excursions. Being a smaller ship was a plus too. First... the food was incredible; well seasoned, flavorful and well presented. So many choices and so many dining options that you never have to repeat yourself. Our butler was always on top of things and went the extra mile for us in locating non-alcoholic beverages for our suite or anything else we would enjoy. Our cabin was spacious, bright and airy. We never felt like we were on top of each other. The closet space was refreshingly large with ample hangars and drawers. The lectures were very interesting and there was something for everybody. Nice mix. We did not partake of many of the offered activities this time and the late night entertainment was too late night for us. We did attend the 6:15 opera and would like to see more entertainment during the matinee timeframe. Ports were fascinating and our tour guides were very knowledgeable and engaging. This was a very relaxing cruise for us where we could come away refreshed. I thoroughly appreciated the library on the 11th deck. My secret place. Professional staff from the cruise director to the room attendant. 6 stars. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This was our fifth Silversea cruise, our second on the Muse but our first repositioning voyage. As always, we flew to our embarkation city the day beforehand and had a fun 24 hours in Athens. We didn’t feel it necessary to book our ... Read More
This was our fifth Silversea cruise, our second on the Muse but our first repositioning voyage. As always, we flew to our embarkation city the day beforehand and had a fun 24 hours in Athens. We didn’t feel it necessary to book our accommodation through Silversea as it’s a major European city with good transport links. When you just need a relatively central location, a comfortable bed and a good shower, why pay over the odds? Silversea waived the “deviation fee” on this occasion so we booked a simple hotel 10 minutes on the metro from the Acropolis. We enjoyed exploring the city on the Sunday and spent Monday morning in the magnificent Acropolis Museum before taking an inexpensive taxi to Piraeus and boarding the ship with minimum fuss. We were sat outside La Terrazza having lunch within 15 minutes. We previously sailed on the Muse on her inaugural voyage in April 2017 and had a great time, despite the dining chaos complained of by some. It definitely felt like a home-coming, with some familiar faces amongst the crew and we easily slipped into the warm embrace of luxury provided onboard. The ship looked good and well-kept. For us, the public spaces achieve the balance between muted luxury and comfort - we are not interested in being surrounded by “bling”. Our suite, although on a lower deck than we have previously sailed on, was in all other respects exactly the same and very convenient for the “big beige lounge” (the Dolce Vita) and Team Trivia every afternoon. Over the course of the cruise, we ate in all the restaurants with the exception of La Dame. This was a conscious choice on our part as on our previous voyage we didn’t feel La Dame merited the extra charge when the food in Atlantide is particularly good. We dined in Kaiseki to celebrate a birthday and the chefs and staff gave us a memorable evening. We also enjoyed the sushi and sashimi for lunch at Kaiseki, which sometimes provided a quieter alternative to the buffet or the pool deck. The food at all restaurants ranged from very good to excellent. It was pleasing to see that the menu at Silver Note (previously our lest favourite option) had improved. The flavours at Indochine were spot-on and the bar there was one of the nicest on the ship. Not all guests appreciate Asian fusion, but it was heartening to see the Indochine dining room busier than previously. Where we had previously sailed on port-intensive itineraries with relatively few sea days, we had to make an adjustment on this cruise where it was roughly half port and half sea days. This was made easier with plenty to keep us busy. There were three guest lecturers on board, two of whom - Mark Elowitz and Tom Jones - were particularly popular. Team Trivia became increasingly popular as the cruise progressed. Cruise Director Vikki conducted matters with elan and confidence. We used the gym regularly and my husband attended a number of classes with the fitness instructor, who he rated highly. The jogging track was busy with walkers and runners first thing in the morning. We had a bridge tour, various cooking demonstrations in different parts of the snip, a galley tour and many other diversions. The Voices of Silversea did a really good job on this voyage and all the various musicians worked hard to support each other and devise new combinations of musical entertainment to offer guests. Charlie the guitarist was a particular star. In addition, there were two other artists brought in for different parts of the cruise - a singer/pianist and a flamenco guitarist. Both were very skilled. We took a number of excursions in the ports we visited. The desert jeep safari in Sharm El Sheikh was more fun and interesting than we had originally expected. The landscapes through which we drove were remarkable and the visit to the Bedouin camp was enlivened by both a whirling dervish and a belly dancer. The full day excursion to Petra was tiring but very well worth it. Again, the desert landscape we passed through to get there was quite spectacular. Everybody will say that there isn’t enough time to do more than skim the surface in Petra and I think that is true. Once we had passed through the Siq, we left the tour group behind and wandered on our own. There was enough flexibility in the lunch arrangements for us to maximise the time in the old city and just grab something quick back at the Movenpick Hotel. After all, there didn’t see a lot of point in going all that way to spend half of it sitting in the dining room of a hotel, however nice. In Safaga, we took the overnight excursion to Luxor. This gave us the best chance to see as much as we could in the time available. For us, the Valley of the Kings was the highlight and more time there rather than at a couple of the photo stops on the way back to Luxor would have been welcome. The evening buffet dinner at the Sonesta Hotel on the banks of the Nile was very relaxed and enjoyable. Having sailed through Pirate Alley and reached Salalah, we cancelled the excursion we had booked and took a taxi with another couple. This gave us the chance to see what the city had to offer at our own pace. It’s not a big place but there are still points of interest - the vegetable and fish markets were amazing. It always surprises us when we hear and read complaints of poor service on Silversea. We have never experienced anything less than exemplary service and this cruise was no different. Our butler and room attendant were efficient and friendly and did a beautiful job of decorating the suite for my husband’s birthday. The staff definitely deserved the applause at the crew parade on our penultimate evening on board. Disembarkation at Muscat was a little slower than on previous occasions, but that was more to do with the local immigration officials than with Silversea staff. All the arrangements for our transfers within Muscat went smoothly. We are looking forward to our next Silversea cruise - we have an open booking and are still pondering which itinerary to try next. Based on our previous experience, we are confident that Silversea will deliver the cruise we want. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My husband loves Hawaii, however the hotel where we always stay was being renovated in 2018 so i took the opportunity to find a suitable cruise - the requirements were : warm weather, ocean (naturally - no river cruise), interesting ... Read More
My husband loves Hawaii, however the hotel where we always stay was being renovated in 2018 so i took the opportunity to find a suitable cruise - the requirements were : warm weather, ocean (naturally - no river cruise), interesting area(s) and a "nice" ship (with a king-size bed - very important). We have done a few cruises and so far liked the QM2-Grill best (we enjoy ballroom dancing). This was a long introduction ... The SilverSea / SIlver Muse had a very good itinerary - from Athens through the Suez Canal to Oman, via stops in Cyprus and multiple stops in Egypt, particularly Luxor. This schedule was well suited for finishing our trip - on our own - in Dubai. As soon as SilverSea / SIlver Muse (or similar, i.e Spirit) has an itinerary we like we'll book again. We loved the experience. The ship is just lovely - the perfect size in our opinion - big enough to have nice facilities yet small enough to provide an intimate and cozy feeling. No photographer to bug you all the time. We did have a "suite" which was very comfortable (and had the required king-size bed). It also had a Bose sound system but the guest(s) have to provide the music which we could not since we don't have "smart phones" (this was really a shame because we are used to excellent sound; there was music available via the TV but very poor sound quality even though they did have some classical music. On that subject - sound quality - the theatre has a terrbile sound system, we were not the only ones complaining. Also - why does everything have to be so loud ?!? It's ok to amplify a Trio or individual Guitar player on the deck around the pool but in a small and cozy room this simply becomes deafening noise !! The food was excellent and the service superb - there are basically 2 dining venues, the relatively formal Atlantide and the more relaxed Italian La Terrazza - there are several more smaller places (Chinese, Japanese and totally informal pool-side restaurants as well as one super-fancy venue where you have to pay a cover charge - we tried it but were not impressed). One real complaint is that the last breakfast seating is at 9:30 and closes at 10 ! We are on holiday - vacation ! So we had breakfast in our room and our butler tried to bring it as late as possible, typically 9:50 and then 10 min later the eggs and bacon so they don't get cold while we have fruit/juice/cereal - this was acceptable since we could sit in our house coats. (We prefer to have a very late breakfast, typically 11:30 and no lunch - don't know why this seems to be such a problem except on the QM2). Regardless of dress codes, most people were very well dressed - a pleasant surprise, we like it. I can't say much about excursions since we made mostly our own arrangements but one "Beach break" which we had booked was cancelled, not enough interest, but then the office agreed to organize it privately for us and this worked out well. All in all a most wonderful experience - we are looking forward to cruise with SilverSea again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We selected this cruise because we wanted a 7-day cruise, roundtrip from Athens. SilverSea Silver Whisper was selected because of its size and amenities. We were able to explore Athens prior to boarding the ship. The embarkation ... Read More
We selected this cruise because we wanted a 7-day cruise, roundtrip from Athens. SilverSea Silver Whisper was selected because of its size and amenities. We were able to explore Athens prior to boarding the ship. The embarkation process was excellent. It was much more organized than other cruises we have experienced. We found our cabin to be exactly as we expected. The bathroom was particularly nice and much larger than expected. Our Butler and housekeeper were delightful and professional. We were able to experienced all of the dining options on the ship. The French restaurant was particularly good. However, we found the quality of the food and the service to be excellent throughout the ship. All of the excursions were well organized. We thought that Santorini was way too crowded, particularly in the afternoon as we attempted to leave. All of the other ports and excursions were much more enjoyable. We highly recommend this cruise and look forward to sailing with SilverSeas again! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Because it was going to the Greek Islands we wanted to visit. Service onboard the ship was great. Our butler was most helpful. Wait staff in restaurant was wonderful! Food was very good. Two friends were I traveled with were ... Read More
Because it was going to the Greek Islands we wanted to visit. Service onboard the ship was great. Our butler was most helpful. Wait staff in restaurant was wonderful! Food was very good. Two friends were I traveled with were vegetarian and there was a good selection on menu for them. Ship was very nice. There were a two young children on this cruise. I would not recommend this cruise for children, it is definitely an adult cruise! The parents did not look like they were having any fun trying to entertain 2 young children. Take a child centered cruise instead ...not this one! We did not partake of the evening entertainment except for the last night. We were pretty exhausted from the excursions every day and went to bed early. The only thing was the excursions were expensive. But I did not want to miss Santorini, Myconos, Delos, Kos, etc. that's what we were cruising to these islands to see. Overall, I highly recommend this cruise for adults, not children! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We have been on more than 15 cruises and fur this one we chose Silversea as we heard how nice it was and wanted a smaller ship. From start to finish including embarkation and disembatcation were flawless. The cabins were luxurious and ... Read More
We have been on more than 15 cruises and fur this one we chose Silversea as we heard how nice it was and wanted a smaller ship. From start to finish including embarkation and disembatcation were flawless. The cabins were luxurious and the butler service was outstanding. All excursions met or exceeded expectations and the food and open dining experience was nice. You do have to make reservations for restaurants early as the do fill up but no matter where you ate the gods was great and service was above and beyond. Everyone had a smile and would customize as necessary. Took 6 Adults and they all were in awe of how nice it was. Highly recommend. Entrertainment was very good but don't expect the big production as on large ships. We made aloe of new friends as the small shop experience made it easy to meet people. Will definitely cruise Silversea again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I chose this cruise based on itinerary, I had not sailed on Silversea before. I liked the Silver Whisper a lot. The staff was (mostly) fantastic, the ship was comfortable, and the food was excellent. Silversea really handles the detail ... Read More
I chose this cruise based on itinerary, I had not sailed on Silversea before. I liked the Silver Whisper a lot. The staff was (mostly) fantastic, the ship was comfortable, and the food was excellent. Silversea really handles the detail work of embarkation and disembarkation well. The ship was full but never felt crowded, which surprised me. It was great to not have lines or waiting at meals or disembarking. I understand the ship is due for an overhaul in December, and I'm sure they will take care of some of the worn out areas I noticed (bathroom caulk, etc.) We ate dinners one time each at La Terrazza and The Grill. Eating outside was a very nice change from the Restaurant. Definitely reserve ahead via MySilversea! I only ate lunch once at the Grill, but it was very good and wished I had discovered the menu sooner. The vegetarian offerings were terrific. I always had several choices of entrees and starters. The cruise was very busy with a port each day, so I didn't spend much time hanging out around the ship or trying anything like the spa or workout facility. We stopped at Santorini, Marmaris (Turkey), Symi, Rhodes, Patmos, and Paros. Santorini was a zoo, even though we were there on a light day. I would not go back. The scenery was just as beautiful at our other stops. Many of these were new ports for the staff, and that was the one weak point of the cruise. The shore desk staff just didn't know much about each place or the excursions! I had done a lot of research before leaving and had some ideas of what I wanted to see, but it would have been helpful to have more information available on board. They did have reps from the local tourism office board the ship as soon as possible each morning, which was enormously helpful. They had maps and information about taxis, etc. They should also keep a copy of a Fodors or other travel guide for passengers to peruse. In Athens, we booked our own hotel (the Athens Was-excellent boutique hotel near the Acropolis) and they arranged our taxi to the port. Very easy, so no need for Silversea's arrangements. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Had a great time on prior Silver Muse of Eastern Mediterranean, Rome to Venice and wanted to experience the Western portion, Athens to Barcelona. The excursions were well thought out, had excellent guides and were well rated as to ... Read More
Had a great time on prior Silver Muse of Eastern Mediterranean, Rome to Venice and wanted to experience the Western portion, Athens to Barcelona. The excursions were well thought out, had excellent guides and were well rated as to difficulty. All needs were supplied by and excellent staff. Traveling as a couple, we met many others who became friends. Entertainment was varied and professional. Food was outstanding. The small numbers contribute to a more personal experience. Definitely more focused on mature adults, although the children that we saw and interacted with appeared to have a good time.The scope of their trips can appeal to all interests. We are looking forward to our next cruise, to the Antarctica and also have scheduled other future trips with Silver Sea. Will hopefully see no negative impact with their association with the Royal Caribbean Line. This is our favorite cruise line and we will continue to travel with them in the future. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We selected Silversea Silver Wind because of it's size - not overwhelmingly large for us. This was our first Silversea cruise but it certainly won't be our last. The size of the ship is very manageable and the variety of ... Read More
We selected Silversea Silver Wind because of it's size - not overwhelmingly large for us. This was our first Silversea cruise but it certainly won't be our last. The size of the ship is very manageable and the variety of restaurants was great for the two of us. This was our first time on the Mediterranean as well. We had a very spacious suite/cabin - the walk in closet and extra powder room - were great to have. Every person we were in contact with on the crew was exceptional - friendly, personable, and willing to help - from the Captain, the Cruise Director, the Hotel Manager, Guest Relations, to every person we were in contact with in the restaurants. We enjoyed the variety of ports and participated in some wonderful excursions combined with some private driver w/guide options in select places. Hats off to the chef!! The food at each of the restaurants was excellent for breakfast, lunch and dinner......great options. It was a wonderful cruise for us and we would definitely do it again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
The itinerary was very interesting, including Delos, Corinth Canal, Delphi, Olympia, rather unique opportunities. The food and service were always excellent. Our luggage did not make it to the ship with us, and arrived 4 days later. ... Read More
The itinerary was very interesting, including Delos, Corinth Canal, Delphi, Olympia, rather unique opportunities. The food and service were always excellent. Our luggage did not make it to the ship with us, and arrived 4 days later. But the Reception desk personnel (Ramona and staff) kept after it until it was found and transported. We had laundry done for us for the few clothes we had, and our butler obtained for me a coat and tie for a formal night. A bad situation was made into a pleasant experience. The entertainment was the best we have experienced on any cruise, including other luxury lines. We met many very interesting and congenial fellow travelers. The crew was very eager to make us feel welcome, and it was interesting to hear many of their personal stories about the life of a crew member at sea. We look forward to future cruises on SilverSea. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
One of the best cruise experiences we have ever had. The check-in in Athens was the smoothest every with a champagne toast on arrival and an escort to our room, Our Butler Darwin met at the door with a bottle of champagne to assist us ... Read More
One of the best cruise experiences we have ever had. The check-in in Athens was the smoothest every with a champagne toast on arrival and an escort to our room, Our Butler Darwin met at the door with a bottle of champagne to assist us in our arrival. The luggage arrived almost as soon as we did. We stayed in Suite 646 a Veranda 4 stateroom. In addition to the bedroom, living room and balcony the suite had a full closet with a chest of drawers and ample room to stand and pick out your wardrobe for the day. The bathroom had a full tube and a shower with ample room to enjoy. We dined in Stars, La Terrazza, The Grill, Le Champagne, Seishin. Each restaurant was special with exceptional service and food. Our favorite was Le Champagne where we celebrated our 25th Anniversary in style, The entertainment was very enjoyable with four song and dance shows and two special ballet shows. We particularly enjoyed the theater seating which was a lounge chair We also signed up for the thermal suite and basically had our own private hot tub and lounge area at the back of the ship to enjoy each afternoon when we returned from shore. This was well worth the additional money. On our Anniversary our Butler Darwin and our room steward Jeffery decorated our room with swans and rose petals and really made the day special. We embarked in Athens (Piraeus) and made port calls to Monemvasia, Aghios Nikolaos on Crete, Marmaris in Turkey, Kusadasi in Turkey, the island of Mykonos, and Mytilene, on the island of Lasvos. We took two of the ships tours to the Palace of Knossos on Crete and to the Ancient Cities of Caunos & Dalyan in Marmaris both were small groups and very interesting. In Monemvasia we went on our own using the local bus to the old fort and had a wonderful lunch at Matoula Restaurantat overlooking the ocean. In Kusadasi, we took a tour to Ephesus & the Terrace Houses provided by our travel agency, VIRTUOSO followed by a wonderful lunch and dance show on a terrace at the Hotel Kismet. In Mykonos, we took the bus provided by the ship to the town of Horta and wondered the alleyways. We found a fantastic restaurant, Restaurant Kostas behind the church recommended by the bus driver which was not crowded. In Mytilene, we found a small public beach not far from the tender drop off to enjoy the morning. On our return to Athens we took the cruise transfer to the airport to catch our return flight. We had a very memorable Silversea Cruise and will be back aboard a Silversea ship in the future. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
The itinerary was the initial draw along with the fact that the ship was brand new. The size of the Muse was very appealing and the ratio of crew to passengers was exactly what we were looking for. The food was superb and the service was ... Read More
The itinerary was the initial draw along with the fact that the ship was brand new. The size of the Muse was very appealing and the ratio of crew to passengers was exactly what we were looking for. The food was superb and the service was impeccable. I made all our dinner reservations months before we boarded so I had something reserved for each evening. I presumed we could change our plans once we were onboard, but I thought it safer to have something lined up. The cabins were beautiful and very comfortable. Everything was seamless -- embarkation, debarkation, the land excursions, tendering, etc. All of it was done exactly as we had envisioned it. We had a great time and look forward to our next cruise on the Muse. The only suggestion we had is that it might be a nice touch to provide unlimited internet for everyone. Other than that, I highly recommend Silverseas as it lived up to and actually surpassed all the wonderful things I had heard about the cruise line beforehand. I think I have been spoiled for any other cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We went to celebrate our wedding anniversary on the Silver Muse, our expectations were exceded, what an intelligent selection we made. The organisation, logistic, attention and service provided are amazing, you can feel the intentions ... Read More
We went to celebrate our wedding anniversary on the Silver Muse, our expectations were exceded, what an intelligent selection we made. The organisation, logistic, attention and service provided are amazing, you can feel the intentions of the personnel to make your stay confortable, enjoyable and well taken care off. The SHIP... Oooohhh THE SHIP what a MUSE, well named! clean, neat, peaceful, happy, confortable, we enjoyed everything. Must of all the system of the different restaurant and the flexibility to make reservations at different hours, I coordinated the times according to the ports departures to have the most time at land, the wine list SUPERB! the meals exquisite high-end cuisine.The entertainment on board made us meet new friends and enjoy each show and bar with them, My Butler OSCAR FERRER a must at silver, made our anniversary night amazing! Memories we made at MUSE are a keepsake in our hearts! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We sailed on the Silver Spirit on it's Athens to Venice seven-day cruise in August 2016. It was our first time on Silversea and we were looking forward to our cruise and it didn't disappoint! Embarkation was as easy as ... Read More
We sailed on the Silver Spirit on it's Athens to Venice seven-day cruise in August 2016. It was our first time on Silversea and we were looking forward to our cruise and it didn't disappoint! Embarkation was as easy as imaginable. We were the only two people embarking. We did get there a little early but not much. We were escorted throughout the process and even escorted to our cabin to see where it was even though cabins weren't ready yet. We had lunch on the pool deck and by 2pm the cabins were ready and our luggage had been delivered! We had a veranda suite on deck six. It was very spacious with a great walk-in closet and plenty of drawers for storage. The sitting area was spacious too. The bathroom was nice although we never used the separate tub. We did use the veranda some and that was fine. A couple of other nice treats were the binoculars in the room and the TV in the mirror. However, the sound and picture quality on the TV need updating. It wasn't HD quality and the sound was like like a radio not quite set to the station. Our butler was new but good. We had breakfast in our suite every morning and he was very punctual. We really liked the small ship feel. No crowds, no lines. Also no pesky photographers. Service was very good throughout. We also liked the all-inclusive aspect and not having to sign for drinks, etc. Having bottled water when getting off and on the ship was great. Some nice cool towels when returning after a hot day in port would've been a nice touch. We only got that at embarkation. We have had that service on other lines and were surprised not to find it with SilverSea. The food was very good to fantastic. I realize that's subjective but we like to have a great meal at a nice restaurant and Silver Spirit did well in the regard. We had dinners in Stars Supper Club, La Terrazza (twice), the Hot Rocks Grill and Le Champagne. We had dinners ashore twice. We had lunch by the pool and in the MDR a couple times. We always had breakfast in our suite. We also thought the bar service was very good, either with standard cocktails or wine or with some special orders. We were traveling with a small group so we didn't partake of the entertainment. We did find some time to play blackjack though and found the dealers and fellow players to be very good. We ended the cruise up a few bucks, so that helped! There isn't much for shopping on the ship compared to bigger ships but that was OK. They do have some sundries hidden away if you need something basic; you just have to ask in the shop. There was some confusion in getting our butler to help with a purchase of Zantac, as our documentation stated that Butlers or Reception could help with this purchase, but we ended up just getting it ourselves. Both the Butler and Reception insisted we see the doctor for this over-the-counter medication. Since we spent a good part of the time in port, the ship's shops were not open very often. The internet was typical cruise ship internet; good enough for checking email, Facebook and the news. We got an hour a day with our suite and that was enough for us. We booked our excursions through Silversea. Several were included excursions and they were good. We had a paid shore tour in Venice that was quite good and a dinner ashore in Dubrovnik at a family estate that was fabulous! On thing about this cruise, the held our passports on the ship. They said it was to assist with getting clearance in each port. We got them back in Venice. We heard they might do that so we brought color copies of our photo page with us ashore. Disembarkation was just about as easy as getting on. With such a small ship, finding our luggage was very easy. Overall a five star cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Originally chose this cruise as it left from Istanbul and having worked with ships through the Turkish straits for nmany years had always wanted to go through myself. However with the security situation this year they moved the start to ... Read More
Originally chose this cruise as it left from Istanbul and having worked with ships through the Turkish straits for nmany years had always wanted to go through myself. However with the security situation this year they moved the start to Athens which was the biggest let down of the holiday but understandable and at least they took the decision early. It proved a good decision, on the day we flew to Athens, Istanbul airport was closed dues the bombs there! Booked through 6 Star Cruises, who's transfers and the hotel booking in Athens were immaculate. Boarding was very swift, almost no one else there at that time as we came from our hotel by taxi. After lunch all luggage was happily in the room for unpacking. On this cruise we hadn't seen much point in booking excursions, just did one (on Corfu where there was limited shore time for such a large island).The excursions there were seemed very expensive and I didn't hear too much glowing praise so maybe this was a good choice. At almost every port of call we were lightered to or docked in the port so didn't need tours to have a good day out. Lightering worked very well and we never had to queue more than a couple of minutes. Food I thought was very good, better than Regent the previous year. The Japanese is really good but only worth one evening paying due the limited menu, and I would skip the French completely anther time for the main dining room as there is too much fat/cream in the food, but the (inclusive) Italian, grill, and the main dining room were excellent quality and had grreat choice on the menu. We always got good tables, quickly and service was excellent. Recommend going to the Japanese for lunch of Shasimi and Sushi at no extra charge if you don't watn to pay the extra $40 a head for dinner. For drinkers like us there were excellent wines at the table, plus cocktails in the bars, where they seemed happy to make anything even stufff not on their lists. Live entertainment was OK , the performers excellent but I have to say not really what I was into. They showed the Euros final in Paris on the big screen and the semi finals in conference rooms with bar service which was an excellent touch. The cruise director's show was best, he's a great guy and his regular trivia quizzes are good fun in the late afternoon., though the points awarded are rather mean - you need 80 for a base ball cap and the list of prizes list actually very poor!! We didn't go to many enrichment lecturers but saw them all on the ships TV and they were very good and helpful with each port. The one bad event happened to me in Koper where some mad old lady local dumped a bucket of water containing god knows what over me in the main square by the cathedral from a 3rd floor window. I went back to the ship to change, reporting the issue to the shore and ship staff and filled in and filed a report but little happened and I have no idea really if the incident was followed up by the police. Silversea did not handle this well. Liked the forward and observation lounges for cocktails before or coffee etc after dinner. Room were comfortable, plenty big enough (we were in 755), the facilities OK though these days the TV should be much larger and the fridge actually cool. The butler was a good guy, thugh we didn't use him too much, and the cabin attendant was a really nice man. All the crew seemed very friendly and happy and I thought that the ship on the whole is very well run. Public rooms good too. WORST THINGG ON SHIP - without a doubt the awfully slow wifi, so antiquated, really needs some investment,, should be so much better on such a small ship given what you are paying. First stop ashore was always a coffee bar with free wifi, always so much faster in every country. Most days could not download the Times in less than 20 mins, a pain when you are on a limited time budget for the voyage. Overall loved the ship and would use Silversea again, but would prefer say Regent for an itinerary where tours were necessary. Ports 2 July 2016 - Mykonos, Greece (lightered) Nice luxurious island, excellent for a stroll about the town and viewing the shops and the windmills. Lightering point short stroll away. 3 July 2016 - Monemvasia, Greece (lightered) Catch a (cheap) shuttle (pay) bus to/from the city gates (about 1.5 miles away) from lightering point. Too far to walk in the heat and dangerous on the narrow road. Very unique and interesting World heritage town. but to fill the full day ashore go swimming after or go back to ship for lunch and air con. 4 July 2016 - Zakinthos, Greece (lightering) Rather boring town on medium sized island. Not much to see, could easily be dropped from the cruise itinerary for somewhere more interesting like in Albania. Best plan to go swimming. Top site seems to be a 40 year old shipwreck that spoils a rather nice looking secluded white beach. Ship did a short detour on leaving so we could see this famous site. Best way to see it is that way with a Bellini in your hand! 5 July 2016 Corfu - docked Ship is docked a good way from the port exit and the town, if not doing a tour you need to take a bus or taxi. Did tour to Achillion Palace (well worth seeing, loads of history especially if you have been to Vienna and seen the other side of the links to the Austro Hungarian empire) , with a stop to see famous Mouse Island and the planes landing below you at the airport. Then onto Corfu town. Would have liked more time in the town but so hot walking around at midday a bit tough. 6 July 2016 Kotor, Montenegro - 7 July 2016 Fabulous sail in/out, get up early and sit with coffee on your balcony, you will see both sides as ship stays overnight . Ship initialy lightered but then docked at 5pm for an overnight stay. Unfortunately a thunder storm rolled in and spoiled any chances of an evening ashore. Geat waled city, wish we had seen more but the above menioned incidnt rather spoiled it for us. 7 July - Dubrovnik (lightered) Arrived after the great early sail out from Kotor and breakfast. Lightered but again strait to town, no walking at all to be in the old city. Very crowded, much better later in the pm which with a late evening sail out we happily could do. Prices very expensive though. 8 July 2016 Hvar, Croatia - (lightered) Nice island small town, not a lot to see though, best to go swimming after a look around the shops and the cathedral, or go on a tour to Split 9 July 2016 Koper, Slovenia (docked) Docked right by the city so easy walk in. Great views from bell tower. A quieter city than many of the others (maybe as it was Saturday and all locals at the beach). Worth looking around and good shops. 10 July 2016 Venice, Italy -and overnight Worth getting up v early to see the great sail in past San Marco etc. Short walk to shuttle boat from cruise docks to 2 bridges up from an Marco, very convenient start point for what ever you want to do. Having been a few times before we were happy to wander. though marvelling at the extortionate prices they try to charge (saw coffee at €10 for example). Really nice to view from ship but a port best seen in off peak season, especially in winter. 5 ships in the day we docked. Too many people. Disembark - Transfer - Flight - Venice Venice airport a dump, glad we were in a lounge, and as usual BA were late (3 hours on London-Athens leg and 1.5 hours on this return). Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
My husband & I completely enjoyed our Silver Sea experience, everything went smoothly from beginning to end, on our 10 day cruise on Silver Spirit from Athens to Athens. We cruised the Greek Islands as well as Kusadasi, Turkey just ... Read More
My husband & I completely enjoyed our Silver Sea experience, everything went smoothly from beginning to end, on our 10 day cruise on Silver Spirit from Athens to Athens. We cruised the Greek Islands as well as Kusadasi, Turkey just prior to the airport bombing in Istanbul airport, and our experience of Ancient Ephesus and Mary's house was incredible, and not to be missed. Icha was a wonderful, amazing tour guide! It would be very sad to not be able to go to Turkey now, because of the political unrest, it was so beautiful! We absolutely enjoyed the different aspects of each of the Greek Islands and hope to go back in particular to Magical Santorini, Historical Rhodes with it's fabulous beaches, Old city and castles, as well as Mama Mia's Skiathos Island! And if you go to Thessaloniki, make sure and do your shopping there, as the prices & choices are best there. The historical Churches were amazing to see there as well. The Ship; Let me tell you about the ship, first of all this is the smallest ship we have sailed on and also our first luxury cruise. So I am writing this review from the perspective of a first time Silver Sea cruiser. I am wanting to impart information that gives you a heads up as to what to expect, particularly if this is your first time on Silver Seas. This ship did live large though, we never felt cramped. I have cruised several other cruise lines. This ship was about 2/3's full. Our cruise was a celebration of our 30th wedding anniversary and we wanted to treat ourselves. The cruise did not disappoint, we were impressed with the impeccable service all throughout ship. Truly top notch! And the tasty 5 star food. Even the breakfast Danish tasted as if it was freshly made that morning, and they were huge! Our Butler Riju and Mark our cabin cleaner were amazing in always knowing the right time to come by and they did pamper us with treats and great room service. The cruise ship is layed out quite nicely and there are many different places on the ship to hang out inside and/or outside to enjoy your drinks and canapés that the ship serves in the bar/lounge areas prior to dinner. The bartenders were fantastic and remembered what drinks we wanted and our names. Rex and Fred were outstanding! We loved meeting the Art Dealer and his wife in the bar. In the evening after 5 pm, women are expected to wear long pants or a dress, it can be casual on informal to casual nights. And men are expected to wear long pants. On Formal nights men are expected to wear jackets and a tie as well in the dining and indoor restaurants. The exception is if you eat at The Grill. The Restaurants; My favorite restaurant was La Terrazza because it was fabulous Italian food and you could eat outside which was fun during a sail away. The pasta was freshly made everyday, and the portions were small and the menu changed slightly day to day. I really appreciated all that. Our least favorites were the 2 specialty restaurants, Le Champagne and Star Supper club, not because of the food, because all the food on the ship was 5 star, but mostly because the service took so long. We sat there for 3 hours in each. I don't like to sit anywhere 3 hours straight! The wine served with all the meals were delicious choices. Someone definitely knew how to pair wine with the meals and did a great job! However, it was a very nice experience to spontaneously decide to have dinner with another couple, and not have to have an awkward moment with someone new as to who is going to pay, or how to divide up the check. Because, we all already paid for everything in advance of the trip. The Pool area: I found the pool a bit on the cold side, it could have been a degree or two warmer to be able to lounge in it. Even though Greece was having a heat wave, the pool was colder than the Greek ocean water. There were always empty lounge chairs, and so it was easy to relax by the pool. The Cabin on Deck 4: Let me tell you it is the biggest suite we have ever cruised, and we booked the least expensive regular cabin and it was huge. It has 4 separate sections. 1) First we walked in we noticed a soaking tub for 2 people, as well as a large shower ( for a cruise ship) As well as plenty of space for toiletries on the granite bathroom counter with dual sinks. Our fabulous butler brought us balloon's for my birthday, yes we celebrated my birthday on the ship as well, and we had a bath drawn for us 2 nights out of our 10 day cruise. We felt spoiled and well taken care of! We even had our sunglasses cleaned and polished with a polishing cloth that was left for us, and my husband also had his shoes shinned, and at the end of our trip our luggage was thoroughly cleaned inside and out. 2) The second section was the walk in closet space with enough hangers to hang all our clothes and plenty of spare room in the closet and a 6 drawers tall chest of drawers. There was plenty of room to change our clothes in the closet area. 3) The King bed area, also had two end tables on each side as well as a vanity at the foot of the bed with a TV in the wall area, which doubled as a mirror when the TV was off. There was plenty of cabinets in which to store things, but we didn't end up using it. 4) The fourth area had a curtain that could be drawn between the seating area with a coffee table, couch and sitting chair. It also had another TV in the wall/mirror area and another vanity area. This area also had a refrigerator that was stocked with our favorite drinks as well as fresh ice everyday. We did not spend much time in the cabin because we toured everyday, but when we did spend time in it, we loved the space! We did not book a balcony cabin, and we were told by our butler Riju that it was too warm to hang out on the balcony anyway because of the heat wave, and that we then had more floor space in our suite without it. The Passengers: There was a mix of couples and friends traveling together. Everyone was open to meeting new people, and we got to meet and know some very interesting, warm and engaging people. And it was wonderful that everyone shared tips about the various restaurants and excursions. We met a recently retired NFL coach and his lovely wife, a retired attorney. A 29 year old entrepreneur who had also brought his girlfriend and parents on the trip. And a lovely retired couple from Australia and another lovely couple from S. Africa. Excursions: Each excursion had about 22 people or less, and we never waited in any lines whatsoever, not for getting off the ship, not for dinner, and not for an elevator as you do on some of the bigger ships. Also the entertainers by night become chaperones during the day trips and alert you when the time is right to get back on the bus or to leave back for the cruise ship. It was nice to get to know them well. The Gym & Spa I did go look at it, but unlike using it on cruise ships in the past, I never felt like I had the time or the energy to use it. Our excursions were in the morning, and by the time we were done touring in the Greek heat, I was done for the day. There were no at sea days on this trip. So it was tough to make time to spa as well, just not enough time for everything. I am an eclectic cruiser, I like variety of cruise styles and ships with a preference for the much larger ships. Each cruise line has their pros and cons. And I especially appreciate the larger than life entertainment & comedy & shopping on the larger ships which was missing on this smaller luxury cruise. Shopping, Gambling & Photography on board: The boutiques on board were only open very late at night, and there wasn't much to look at in the stores, I was disappointed by that. Just few pieces of very high end jewelry and clothes. If you forget something for your trip, make sure and ask the shop keeper if she has the item you need, because the most basic things one might need are hidden from view and are behind a locked mirrored cabinet. We never saw anyone gambling in the casinos when we walked by around 10 to 10:30 pm, but we were told they do get busy very late at night. Also while cruising, I do like having our pictures taken particularly for formal nights to commemorate a special trip, but there are not any photographers on this cruise. I did miss that perk that you get on the larger ships. In Conclusion; My husband prefers the Silver Sea experience over the other cruise lines. He said he has never felt more relaxed. He loved that everything was paid for in advance and that he wasn't needing to sign for anything at all! We look forward to our next trip with Silver Seas. As far as I go, I prefer the larger ships, but will definitely be more than willing to do another Silver Sea cruise in the near future. It was an unforgettable 5 star experience, and my favorite part was meeting all the fabulous friendly people, and having the most interesting conversations with them, as well as the exquisite dining experiences! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We chose for the smaller of the three types of ships that they have. We have, in the past, sailed on the Silver Cloud and the Silver Spirit. We did not really like their largest ship the Spirit. The trip went from Athens, four ports in ... Read More
We chose for the smaller of the three types of ships that they have. We have, in the past, sailed on the Silver Cloud and the Silver Spirit. We did not really like their largest ship the Spirit. The trip went from Athens, four ports in Egypt as well as the Suez Canal, Aquaba, two ports in Oman and our last stop was Dubai. What a great trip this was, the very best ever with Silversea. Not one complaint. But we sail for specific reasons with them. We want a small ship, we want 4 - 6 real sea days, with no land in sight. We go for great food, good wines and very very good and friendly service. We like the all inclusive prices that they have. We like their suites, but moaners and groaners will probably have some reason to bitch about the size of the bathroom or a little bit of wear and tear. So it is not 100 % perfect, but it is cozy, homely, classy, european, friendly and luckily with few nouveau riche, noisy complaining, non cultured windbags. We loved it and have booked again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Embarkation/Disembarkation: Embarkation in Piraeus, the port for Athens, on 10 May was extremely smooth and easy. In a change from our typical “do-it-yourself” approach we actually stayed at a Silversea hotel and took their transfer ... Read More
Embarkation/Disembarkation: Embarkation in Piraeus, the port for Athens, on 10 May was extremely smooth and easy. In a change from our typical “do-it-yourself” approach we actually stayed at a Silversea hotel and took their transfer from the hotel to the port. Yes, it was a large bus but only 24 or so passengers so it was a quick and easy 45 or so minute trip. Our luggage was whisked away by waiting porters and we went into the terminal to go through security and check-in. Other than the Greek officials checking passports the rest of our processing was done by ship's staff in the terminal. The check-in entailed surrendering our passports, verifying the credit card we'd be using for ship board purchases, and getting our room key cards. No waiting for group numbers or colors to be called, we were immediately escorted to the ship where staff took our carry-on luggage from us and assisted us in boarding the ship. We were greeted by Colin Brown, the ship’s cruise director, and he recognized us from our previous cruise on the Wind. The staff with our carry-on bags waited patiently while we exchanged pleasantries and then escorted us to our cabins. Amazingly, though probably not surprising considering the size of the ship, our luggage was very quickly delivered to our cabins. Disembarkation on 28 May in Civitavecchia, the distant port for Rome, was amazingly rapid and easy. One thing we didn't like about disembarkation, and it's more of an observation than a complaint, is that Silversea asked us to leave our cabins not later than 8:30 AM so they could prepare for the on-coming passengers though our butler and cabin attendant were very patient and really didn’t pressure us. We’d had eighteen days with them and had gotten to know both of them very well. An outstanding team. As it turned out we went to one of the restaurants for a full breakfast and we were off the ship by 8:45 AM. Passing through Italian Customs and Immigration was quick and really very easy. The ship's staff, many of whom we'd gotten to know during the cruise, quickly greeted us in the terminal, helped us locate our luggage, and make connection with our transportation. Once again we used a Silversea hotel for our post-cruise stay in Rome so we were again on a partially full bus. Sadly, but efficiently, we were driven away from the terminal within 15 or 20 minutes and arrived at our hotel some hour and 45 minutes later. Itinerary: The highlight, and main reason for booking this cruise, was the itinerary. Actually it was a combined itinerary of two 9-day cruises and our first back-to-back cruise. Fourteen ports in eighteen days, and actually three of those were overnights, was intense and exciting. We started in Athens then on to Kusadasi, Santorini, Nafplion, Katakolon, Corfu, Kotor, Dubrovnik, Hvar, Venice, Koper, Split, Sorrento, and finally Civitavecchia. At least for us this was a second cruise of a lifetime following our previous Mediterranean cruise that had focused more on the eastern Med. We'd be hard pressed to say we like one better than another as each had its own attraction, flavor, and interest. Excurions: Quite frankly we were on the move on this cruise. The first sixteen days were port after port, city after city, and site after site. In fact, out of eighteen days we only had one sea day and that was during the second cruise on the next to last full day. We took a mix of self-guided, ship's, and private tours. I think we did just about as well as we could have done and in retrospect I can't think of any tour we would have done any differently. It's almost impossible to list where we went and what we saw on this cruise. Overall highlights have to include a second and unrushed visit to the Acropolis in Athens, Ephesus and the terrace houses , Olympia, Venice, many sites in Rome that we didn’t get to two years ago including a private tour of the Vatican, and that's just to name a few off the top of my head. Let's just say the list of "oh my gosh's" is long and extensive and I'd ventured to say my wife's list is probably different than mine. She's building our website report, day by day, right now and eventually the whole cruise will be captured at www.klugsplace.com . Service: The service on the Wind was almost impeccable without being intrusive or overbearing, certainly the best we've had in all of our cruises. Regular or loyal Silversea cruisers are probably thinking "And you expected what?" about this time and admittedly stepping up to a luxury cruise was everything we thought it might be and maybe a bit more. Maybe it's all about expectations and I like to think we're not demanding people so it's not like we set out to come up with requests or challenges to see how well the staff performed. It is just little things like thinking we might want to eat outside the night we transitioned through the Straights of Messina. We’d failed to make reservation and were pretty much resigned to eating in the main restaurant. At lunch that day one of the head waiters came by and asked how we were doing and where were we going to eat that night. We told him the main restaurant as we’d failed to make other arrangements. He immediately said “Let me check on that”. Within an hour we had a wonderful table on the aft deck outside of the La Terrazza restaurant. Food: I feel like I'm sounding like a broken record, or sound loop for those of you who don't remember records, but the food on the Wind was excellent. Even on this small ship there are basically four dining venues. There is the main restaurant aptly named The Restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There is the La Terrazza that is semi-buffet for breakfast and lunch but transforms into a full service Italian restaurant at night. There is the Pool Grill that serves a continental "wellness" breakfast, has menu lunch, and transforms into the Black Rock Grill at night. Should say here that the Black Rock Grill is actually a fun, interactive dining option where you get to cook your own dinner on this extremely hot eight or so inch square flat lava rock. Hard to explain but it's actually easy and the staff is right there to help you through the process. The final option is the Le Champagne which is the Wind's only additional charge specialty restaurant that serves only dinner in a very small and intimate setting. We ate in all the venues on the cruise with the exception of the Le Champagne this cruise. The Restaurant and Hot Rocks were fantastic but I will have to say the La Terrazza was a big disappointment this cruise. It was one of the best venues on the same ship two years ago but throughout our cruise the food was sometimes marginal and the service painfully slow. Entertainment: In a break or a change from our previous cruise on the Wind we didn’t go to many of the shows on this cruise. We did go to see Colin Brown who is not only the Cruise Director but also a very accomplished concert pianist and he performed a couple of nights during the cruise. In addition the ship had a small 4-piece band who performed nightly in the Panorama Bar and a piano player/singer who performed in The Bar, yes another aptly named venue, every night. There is a casino, and I use the term a bit loosely here as it is small with only one blackjack table, one variation of poker table, one roulette table, and maybe a dozen slot machines. Unfortunately the casino was closed totally or until late many nights as we had the overnights and many late departures. We spent much less time there and dancing versus our previous cruise and really just enjoyed the company of fellow passengers and ourselves most evenings. Passengers: I'd say the average age on this cruise was in the mid-50's to early 60's, a bit younger than what we've become used to on Holland America but not significantly different. It certainly was an international group with the majority being English speakers, probably 90% of the passengers, from United States, England, Canada, Asia, India, and Australia. I did also hear German, French, Italian, and I think Russian from a few couples. There were a few children, maybe five or six, mostly babies and none over two or three years old but the families seemed to stay pretty much to themselves and you really didn't notice them around much. Of course with such a port intensive cruise folks were off the ship almost daily so there wasn’t a lot of time confined to the ship. One observation was the interesting difference in the two 9-day cruises. Only 18 or so of us stayed on the ship for the second leg so we had a significant turnover of passengers. The nature of the overall group on the first 9-day leg was a little more party-like. Interestingly it was driven in large part by one couple who were celebrating a birthday and them, in a good hearted way most of the time, wanted everybody to enjoy themselves and help them celebrate. It wasn’t distracting but it was certainly obvious. The second group was more reserved and had more returning Silversea Venetian Society members than the first. We met great people on both legs and made what we think will be two or three lasting friendships to the point we’re presently planning to cruise next year with one of the couples. Overall Impression: This was our second cruise on Silversea after several cruises on Holland America and one Celebrity cruise. In all fairness it probably isn't fair to compare those cruise lines to Silversea. Yes, it's a cruise and a ship but the scale of operations and the resulting level of service plus the all-inclusive aspect don't lend themselves to exact comparison. It's hard to say, mainly because it's so subjective, that one is better than the other or one is worth or not worth the money. This cruise set an extraordinarily high mark from the itinerary to the service to the food. Without a doubt it was a great cruise because of the unusual and exciting itinerary so many cruises would pale in comparison. We will cruise Silversea again without hesitation and are already planning a cruise for next year with new found friends from this cruise.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Seabourn Quest 2012 cruise vs. Silversea Spirit 2013 cruise We took the Seabourn Quest 2012 11-day cruise from Rome to Barcelona and a 2013 Silversea Spirit 7-day cruise from Athens to Istanbul. Bearing in mind that we are dealing with ... Read More
Seabourn Quest 2012 cruise vs. Silversea Spirit 2013 cruise We took the Seabourn Quest 2012 11-day cruise from Rome to Barcelona and a 2013 Silversea Spirit 7-day cruise from Athens to Istanbul. Bearing in mind that we are dealing with the top of the high end, and that a comparison in this league is perhaps splitting a few hairs, here is my attempt to make a head to head comparison: 1. Embarkation process: Equally flawless from arrival to completion with lunch served while suites were being prepared for early arrivals, but with some minor differences noted: when you arrive your cabin on Quest, your luggage is sitting on a mat on your bed, whereas on the Spirit your luggage is waiting at your suite’s door. However, the Spirit has a "butler” assigned to all cabins, who offered to unpack us (we declined the offer). (Butler service on the Quest is limited to the highest end suites.) One troublesome gaffe on the Spirit (which I guess could happen anywhere), is that one of pieces of our luggage did not arrive to our room, despite bearing the preprinted Spirit label with suite number on it. We immediately alerted our butler, who repeatedly assured us that the "hotel manager” was on the dock dealing with it and that most likely was delayed for additional security screenings due to containers of liquids in the piece. Then, after 90 minutes of such "assurances”, another guest graciously brought the missing luggage to our suite, advising that it was mis-delivered to his suite. It would be better if they used bar code scanner labels to know where luggage is during movement. Notwithstanding this gaffe, I give a tie vote to the embarkation process. 2. The Ship: Upon first entering the Spirit, my first impression was that (perhaps because it is older), it was dark (using dark woods), as compared to the Quest which presented a lighter and more open experience. As one descends to the lower decks on the Quest, the hallways get narrower, following the taper of the hull, consistent, however, with maintaining uniformity of suite size on all decks. Also, a significant issue to watch out for on the Quest is that some of the suites on the lower decks had portions of veranda walls in metal (instead of the usual glass), effectively serving to block some of the exterior views from those cabins. A niggling design annoyance on the Spirit was that one person could not pass another at the foot of the bed because of the narrowness created by the Spirit building in a second vanity table coming out from the wall opposite the foot of the bed. Otherwise, appointments within the suite were equal, though the Spirit had a bathtub (which the Butler or housekeeper once left with a surprise bubble bath for my wife!), whereas (I think) the Quest did not have a tub (which we do not use anyway). Due to the brighter presentation of the Quest, and the annoyance of inability of us to pass each other at the foot of the bed on the Spirit, the edge in my vote goes to the Quest. On the other hand, while we were midship, higher than middeck on both ships, the sense of any movement, docking, or dock departure was simply undetectable on the Spirit, whereas I did get seasick one night on the Quest. (That, however, may be more a function of routing on open seas, than ship.) However, this should be balanced by the fact that at the time of our booking, Silversea’s pricing for virtually the same 2013 cruise offered by Seabourn (not on Quest), was much more aggressive, which can serve to assuage petty annoyances! (Seabourn’s substantially higher pricing at the time may have reflected it having sold out of the mid-range suites, and the fact that Silversea was running a sale at the time of our booking.) Finally, we experienced some substantial vibration in suites on the aft end of the Spirit that we never experienced anywhere else on the Spirit, so I would book mid or forward on Spirit. 3. Food: Food on cruises is a very big deal to me, so my commentary is perhaps skewed in relation to other factors. The food is excellent on both ships. Now for the whining: The (outdoor buffet) breakfasts on the Quest are deeper in variety, such as interesting daily specials made to order. And one more niggling point about breakfast: it is almost a sacrilege to me for the Spirit to have such wonderful servings of smoked salmon, with cream cheese and capers, and yet no bagels upon which to enjoy it. (I certainly respect readers’ right to deemed me "spoiled”, or to not even know what a bagel and lox is; suffice it to say, the Quest had bagels to go with the smoked salmon, which I enjoyed at many breakfasts.) At (outdoor buffet) lunch, this issue got deeper on the Spirit. There was plenty of good food, but simply not at the depth of quality and selection (and expense to the ship) as on the Quest. For instance, on the Quest, the chef continuously put out individual chilled glass bowl servings of plump shrimp cocktail. Nothing like that on the Spirit. There was more selection of high line food on the Quest’s outdoor lunch buffet, and fellow gourmands (who sailed both cruise lines) concurred with me that there appeared to be relative economizing on the Spirit’s outdoor lunch buffet. (Of course, perhaps over the last year, Seabourn performed some belt tightening of which I would be unaware (no pun intended)). Dinners on both ships’ restaurants were equally excellent, though the standing menu filet mignons on the Spirit were so thin that they appeared to curl up a bit in cooking. The Spirit had more restaurants (+-6 vs. +-4), but two of them on the Spirit were extra charge restaurants, in comparison to there being (I think) no surcharge-restaurants on the Quest. 4. The staff: equally excellent, well-selected, well-trained, and held to " and infused with -- the highest standards of gracious hospitality. Some staff on each ship recalled what alcoholic beverage I had the previous day and automatically brought it over to me the next day " all to the credit of both cruise lines. The Butler on the Spirit, in each case on his own, took my shoes out one night during dinner to be shined, another afternoon had tea sandwiches in our suite upon our return, and on another day had strawberries with chocolate sauce and bubbly on ice awaiting our return to the ship (as though we needed more food!). (That said, as happens anywhere, there are some minor exceptions: the maître d’ at the Italian restaurant on the Spirit needs to be retrained to pick his head up from looking down, and respond to greetings; and a tour director on the Quest shouted at a staffer in the presence of my wife.) Edge to the Quest for the minor luxuries of more staff taking the trouble to learn our names and preferences, which added personalization; though some folks may prefer the feature of the Butler on the Spirit, who was extremely gracious, but whom we really didn’t use since everything generally was executed well, thus not needing his help, though all his special treats were indeed nice. 5. Excursions. Pricey, but well-executed on both ships. (We were advised that Seabourn dropped one tour operator about whom several guests complained.) Dinner at Ephesus, Turkey (illuminated) library ruins (Quest, included), or nighttime concert there (Spirit $179 p/p), is a life-experience not to be missed. 6. Enrichment: Winner is Seabourn; it had pre-port arrival briefings by both a local expert, as well as by a Phd who explained the geopolitical considerations of the port into which we were next to dock. This provided input both practical and intellectual. In contrast, the Spirit had a speaker talking about her book of interesting places to see in the world " none of which had a thing to do with the ship’s itinerary, and there were no other speakers providing local briefings on the Spirit (though both ships maintain local expert-desks for answers to questions / suggestions.) Finally, during such briefings, the Seabourn briefing room / auditorium had servers serving drinks, together with a place to put the drink. The Spirit, had no servers (though you could find a bar on the opposite end of the same deck and bring your drink back to the auditorium where, alas, the drink holders (it that is what they were) were too small to hold a drink glass. Sniff! 7. The bottom line: assuming rough parity in price, I would go "Seabourn” again, because weighing unequally the factors that mean more to me, it is worth a bit of a premium, but not a price gouge. All-in, we are indeed privileged and happy to be on either ship line.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
This trip was exceptional from start to finish, with a few middle-eastern style 'quirks', which were down to the locals not the ship. I would highly recommend Silver Wind to anyone who values the personal touch, the very very ... Read More
This trip was exceptional from start to finish, with a few middle-eastern style 'quirks', which were down to the locals not the ship. I would highly recommend Silver Wind to anyone who values the personal touch, the very very best of service and personality over cutting-edge design and gimmicks. Silver Wind met my every expectation, it was a joy to be on-board. The people really make this ship, the crew, staff, managers and fellow guests were the best I have come across. We arrived into Athens during an anti-austerity demonstration outside the parliament and where was out hotel, King George Palace, but in Syntagma Square. Luckily George's Taxis were able to get us there even though all the roads were closed and the army and riot police were standing in a line blocking the streets in case things started to get lively. Our rooms in the hotel looked out over the square, it was interesting to watch the protests from the balcony. We didn't for one moment feel unsafe and as soon as the demonstration was over, ten minutes later the street sweepers were out, tidying up and things quickly returned to normal. Our transfer to the ship was again with George's Taxis, all went to plan. Dropped us right outside where Silver Wind was berthed. We were met by the car door by a porter who whisked us to check-in, no one was waiting, there were NO QUEUES! 5 minutes and we were onboard and it was only 12.30! Our bags went to our cabins and we went for lunch, outside at the back of the ship. The whole ship is friendly, comfortable, welcoming and very professional. When our suite was ready our butler and her assistant unpacked our cases for us, a real treat, whilst we relaxed and explored the ship. The fridge in the suite was stocked daily with whatever you desired, champagne, fresh juices, spirits. The staff knew our names by the second day and were addressing us by our first names by day 3. Food in all restaurants was invariably excellent and there were invitations to dine with various members of the ship's crew throughout the voyage, all very memorable. Onboard there is very much a have whatever you want, wherever you would like it policy and if that means curry, prepared by one of the Indian chefs, in the main restaurant, them so be it. You only need to ask. Entertainment was excellent,pianists, the ship's band, a young, very talented acoustic guitarist was exceptional. We participated in 'L'Ecole des Chefs' a cookery school with a series of demonstrations, tastings, lunches with wine pairings and workshops. All were excellent and included in the fare. Disembarkation was well organised and civilized. Obviously sorry to be leaving, but looking forward to a few days in Dubai. We will definitely be back onboard the Silver Wind some day, hopefully soon! Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Flights to Athens and home from Nice were arranged by Silverseas and went without a hitch. No sign of any demos in Athens on 30th September and we were welcomed on board with a glass of bubbly while we checked in. Our butler was on ... Read More
Flights to Athens and home from Nice were arranged by Silverseas and went without a hitch. No sign of any demos in Athens on 30th September and we were welcomed on board with a glass of bubbly while we checked in. Our butler was on hand to greet us as soon as we arrived at our midships veranda suite and was to prove helpful during the cruise, making sure drinks/canapes were there when required. Also booked alternative restaurants for us. This was a 7 night port intensive cruise so not much in the way of on board activites other than a ports lecturer who we found to be very knowledgeable and helpful. We took a couple of ship's tours - Mount Etna drive in Sicily and Etruscan countryside from Civitavecchia - while we did our own thing in Malta,Sorrento,and Elba. The ship's tours were fine - not too crowded on the coach and good local guides. They are too expensive though. We ate in Hot Rocks twice (very good). La Terrazza (diasappointing) Le Champagne (a bit pretentious) while the main dining room food was first class and service excellent. Because of the low ceiling, the room itself is not particularly attractive. Our suite was fine and all the public rooms had a good standard of decor and we felt that the ship was, in every way, as well looked-after as it had been on our previous cruise 12 months ago. The entertainment consisted of a singing/dancing group and they performed every evening. They were young and enthusiastic and did a pretty good job. It was a little surprising that there was no comedian or musician to take some of the entertainment load. Finally, a special mention of Fernando - the best cruise director we have come across. He was everywhere, did everything, and seemed to know every passenger's name Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Having completed 6 Cruises with Silver Sea I'm afraid there is no going back to "traditional" size Ships for my Wife & I. The "Whisper" is a perfect size with 340 pax to 300 Staff. SS offer every Facility that ... Read More
Having completed 6 Cruises with Silver Sea I'm afraid there is no going back to "traditional" size Ships for my Wife & I. The "Whisper" is a perfect size with 340 pax to 300 Staff. SS offer every Facility that you would expect of a 6* Cruise Ship. Accommodation is excellent,The Mini Bar is re Stocked every day with your Preferred Champagne & Wines. Every Staff member is highly trained, extremely Pleasant and very attentive. Restaurants are well Furnished, Food is of an excellent standard (we feel as though we are Dining out every night!)Le Champagne, well worth paying a supplement for. We paid $30 each and bought our Champagne and Wine.......a less expensive option than the $200pp Degustation Menu charge. Pool is excellent, Spa and Gym are Functional. The Bars are well staffed, after night 1 the Barman (Oscar) remembers your drink! nice touch. Entertainment in the evening can be anything from a "Classical" Concert Pianist to a "Hollywood musical" with a late night (10pm)Cinema Film. There is a Bridge Club, Casino.There is a fumidor for Smokers, the Spirit allows Smoking on Oneside of the main Bar and on the Pool Deck. Silver Sea Ships are truly ALL INCLUSIVE! Fantastic experience Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
I had a long review typed out until my puppy jumped on the keyboard. So here's the short version. 1. Most people on the ship weren't overfed whiners like a couple of previous reviewers who were complaining about everything from ... Read More
I had a long review typed out until my puppy jumped on the keyboard. So here's the short version. 1. Most people on the ship weren't overfed whiners like a couple of previous reviewers who were complaining about everything from fish salt levels to the crew's race (yet ignoring the line putting you up on their dime when the volcano messed-up travel). I found most to be down to earth, friendly, and approachable. Well-traveled and of good taste but not entitled and spoiled, wide range of ages from late 40s to 80s, maybe a dozen kids on the ship but all well-behaved. 2. Free alcohol goes a long way towards having a gooooood time. 3. Crew tried very hard to please. The butlers realized how quickly we were devouring the champagne and started leaving a fresh bottle ever night. The social hostess saw that our camera battery was low and sent up her personal charger. The maitre d'hotel sent us to the best table in the house after we helped him out (and I generally found the restaurant at least 2-Michelin-star quality.) Two watchouts: A. Shore excursions were generally very high quality with excellent guides, far better than the typical tour. Only problem was one tour where the "jewelry factory and museum" was actually a tourist trap gold shop. We visited there at noon and didn't have lunch until 3.30. On another, the tour company dropped us off at their rug store which had a big "Silversea" sign, which looked like Silversea was endorsing their subsequent hard-sell. In both cases the tour concierge had no interest in trying to make it better next time (such as eliminating the jewelry store and sending a message in advance about the rug store). She's been at sea a bit too long. B. Breakfast buffet was a tad limited. The space is just too small and crowded to be a proper buffet. Try room service or wake up early and go to The Restaurant. And if you're concerned about foxtrotting on the dance floor (per one of the earlier reviews), we did so for about a half hour and had no problems. Read Less
Sail Date March 2010
Just Returned From Silver Whisper-FABULOUS!! My husband and I were on Silver Wind ten years ago and had the trip of our lifetime. I never thought it could be repeated again. But it was! Another trip of a lifetime on Silversea! We were ... Read More
Just Returned From Silver Whisper-FABULOUS!! My husband and I were on Silver Wind ten years ago and had the trip of our lifetime. I never thought it could be repeated again. But it was! Another trip of a lifetime on Silversea! We were on a 9 day cruise - June 6-15 to Greek Islands, Sicily and Italy. Of course the ports were wonderful, but I am not going to review the ports since everyone chooses an itinerary based on their own preferences. My objective is to discuss our experience on Silversea. From the moment we boarded the ship- The service was incredible!! Every staff person always greeted us and had a big smile on their faces. Woke up very early every morning (we couldn't wait to start our day on Silver Whisper) - and ordered cappuccino delivered to our rooms. Ten minutes later it would arrive and placed on our balcony with fine linens and china. 24 hour room service- you can order anything to eat or drink. Ordered drinks at 2:00 a.m. and same efficient and quick service. Then we would go to La Terrazza for buffet breakfast when it opened. Huge wonderful assortment of breakfast items, juices, fresh omelet station, fresh fruit station with staff cutting the fruit. etc. - Glasses for juices were chilled. The attention to this kind of detail was evident in everything they did on the ship. Then you could have pancakes, waffles etc., prepared for you. I am not a breakfast eater- so ordered Lamb Chops, with wild mushrooms and ice tea every morning. (Asked for fresh pineapple slice in my ice tea). By the second day, the waiters knew me and would say - "Are you ready for your Lamb Chops and your Ice tea with fresh pineapple". 10-15 minutes later the Lamb Chops arrived. The point I am trying to get across is whatever special request you may want- the answer is always "YES"! The waiters would carry your plates to your table from the buffet. All the waiters had wonderful attitudes and were there to please you in every way. You are made to feel very special! We had a veranda suite which included a balcony. We loved having the balcony and used it all the time. The room is lovely, with plenty of closet space and more drawers than you can fill up- and we had 4 pieces of luggage. Personalized stationary with your name on it. Fresh flowers in your cabin. The bathrooms were fantastic! - double sinks, shower and tub with Bulgari amenities- soap, shampoo, conditioner etc. Very comfortable bed with fine linens and duvet cover. The stewardess was fantastic. Always smiling and calling us by our names. Good morning Mr. and Mrs....... The stewardess's- work in teams with 2 people taking care of your suite. The cabins are cleaned twice a day and the cleaning was immaculate. They even lined up my makeup in a straight row! We kept saying to ourselves, this service is UNBELIEVABLE!!! We had to keep asking ourselves how anything can be so perfect like this. We ate dinner every night in the main dining room and also ate once in the Italian Restaurant. The food was excellent. Many choices and if you don't see what you like on the menu- they will bring you what you request. One day I saw an appetizer from lunch that looked interesting and requested it for dinner. Nothing was ever a problem! The dining room wait staff was so professional, great attitudes and impeccable service. We were greeted by the waiter and wine steward the minute you sat down. Every night it was like eating in a fine restaurant. Presentation of the food on the plates was always beautifully done. The beef dishes were extraordinary- beef melted in our mouths! You will be pampered beyond belief!! Most nights we would stay in the dining room for 3 hours talking to our fellow guests we were dining with at our table. We enjoyed the formal nights as it made for a Glamorous Evening! Chef David was accessible to all the guests. Coming out to the dining room, greeting everyone and making sure you were happy. One day my husband told the chef- he may prefer something different instead of a filet of fish. The chef said call me and let me know- he said "do you want a whole fish- I can make it anyway you want". Almost on every port before we were ready to sail- there would be a lovely small buffet set up by the pool area before dinner. Chef David was always walking around - getting to know all the guests. One night we had a "Barbeque Dinner" on the pool deck. It was FANTASTIC! Forty desserts to choose from- I counted! The pool deck was set up with fabric covered chairs, linen tablecloths. Great entertainment and dancing to the wee hours. We were talking to a few couples and the Captain came by our table and talk to us for one hour! That is what made our cruise so special- all the staff treated you like family! Every cruise they do an open Kitchen Galley Buffet Lunch. What a magnificent presentation! So interesting to see how the kitchen functions. See pictures of Kitchen Galley Lunch, Barbeque Dinner Buffet on Pool Deck and Breakfast Buffet: http://pictures.aol.com/galleries/dafne478965 At the bars they use linen napkins- another attention to fine detail! All the bartenders made great drinks! I like Pina Coladas and had it prepared in Hawaii with vanilla ice cream. I told the bartender and with in a few minutes they went down to the kitchen galley and got the ice cream. No request is denied! When we disembarked at the ports they had cold bottled water to take ashore and on the way back waiting for the tenders to return to the ship -at the ports they had cold punch, water and chilled towels! What makes Silversea cruises so special are the fellow passengers you meet. We met wonderful, fascinating people from all over the world. Everyone was so friendly and wanted to socialize. We have made some lasting friendships that we will keep in touch with. If you want wonderful service, great food, and a smaller ship than there is only one Cruise Line- SILVERSEA! The advantage of the smaller ship is that it is easier to make friends since you run into the same people all the time and the staff members get to know you personally. Ron our cruise director was so friendly, and eloquent making announcements and always had a big smile when he greeted us. The entertainment was classy, A Broadway singer, a famous pianist etc. On the third day the Cruise Hotel Director delivered to all cabins a sheet asking if there is anything that he can do to make your cruise more pleasant please let him know. I wrote back on the sheet: "HOW CAN YOU IMPROVE PERFECTION" And I meant it. There is nothing that I would add or change. Spoke to many fellow passengers the last day of the cruise and everyone had the same opinion saying it was FABULOUS! If you like Four Seasons hotels than you will love Silversea! In fact I think Silversea is a cut above Four Seasons Hotels if you compare everything. Silversea is a CLASS ACT! You will not be disappointed. In fact it will probably be one of the highlights of your life!! You will be blown away with the Perfection in everything they do to make your cruise a memorable experience. Silversea is expensive, but worth every dollar you pay. We loved an all inclusive cruise- never have to sign for anything. Everything is included. We kept asking ourselves, how can a cruise line deliver such a perfect product down to every last detail. We travel all over the world for our business and have stayed in the finest hotels- and the Cruise we just went on with Silversea in all around service, food, attention to detail, and staff is top on our list. To be honest it was hard to go back to reality when the cruise ended as this cruise was a Fantasy come true! Our experience on Silversea was beyond our wildest dreams! How would we describe our cruise? MAGNIFICENT! AMAZING! PERFECT! FANTASTIC! INCREDIBLE! AND FABULOUS!! If you want the best service, great food, a wonderful cruise experience than Silversea is for you! Read Less
Sail Date June 2007
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